Thursday, April 23, 2015

Notes, quotes and comment

I have a long-standing theory that the steal of home is too infrequently attempted, and therefore I will not be critical of Torii Hunter for going for it Wednesday night. It was a good opportunity, and I have little doubt that even the 35-year-old Hunter would have made it safely. The 39-year-old Hunter is a bit slower, and did not.

Good idea, inadequate execution.


Dan Rohlfing hasn't
appeared in a game yet
for Rochester because
of a sprained ankle.
The Twins sold minor-league utility catcher Dan Rohlfing to the Mets. Rohlfing has been in the Twins organization since 2007, when he was drafted in the 14th round, and it seems that every spring he's one of the last players sent out from major league camp.

He catches, he plays some outfield, he holds down first base on occasion, and he probably carries the ball bag when asked. What he hasn't done on any level is hit well enough to be considered a bona fide prospect, much less force his way onto the 40-man roster.

The Mets have had some catching injuries this year, and the Twins had three backstops in Triple A before sending Rohlfing on his way (the others being Josmil Pinto and Eric Fryer). I don't know if Rohlfing is going to be any closer to reaching the majors with New York, but it seemed unlikely to happen for him with the Twins.

Rohlfing -- and to a lesser extent Chris Herrmann, who is on the major league roster -- illustrate the flaw in the utility catcher. If a player who can catch competently hits well enough to play a corner position, he's going to be a regular catcher. If a player who can catch competently merely hits well enough to be a backup catcher, he's not worth playing at a corner. Versatility is nice; hitting is better.


I am not at all surprised by the reversal Wednesday of the Barry Bonds conviction for obstruction of justice. Which leaves the federal government with a big O-fer in their prosecutions of Bonds and Roger Clemens.

I will merely link to this 2012 post featuring my Free Press edit on the Clemens trial. One thing I should perhaps update on that post: I am now, as I was not then, a member of the edit board. (If I recall correctly, the edit ran as written.)

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